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Everything posted by marmer

  1. Wow. I really like that corner window on the second floor part of the stairwell and the fireplace hearth.
  2. The original poster in this thread also posted this thread about old Ford dealerships: I don't think this building was ever Jack Roach Ford. http://www.houstonarchitecture.com/haif/topic/29600-old-ford-dealerships/?hl=%2Bold+%2Bford+%2Bdealerships That said, first-gen SHO's totally rock!
  3. I have a reasonably high-definition display. On Safari on my Mac, I used Command + (plus sign) to zoom in. You can do Command - (minus sign) to zoom out or Command 0 (numeral zero) to return to original size. Of course you are limited by the resolution of the original image, and I am not 100% confident of the words. Call it about 85%. If I really wanted to, I could download the image, resample it, and do various contrast, lighting, and sharpening enhancements in Photoshop, which might improve it a little. I don't think this image would be improved enough to bother, though.
  4. Looks like the Cohen Building by Joseph Finger on Main Street, but it's probably not. The cornice detailing is similar, though, with the "pine cones." I think the vertical corner sign reads "J. J. Lemmon." I think the building across the street says "Automotive _electricians._" Your instinct that aftermarket auto electronics as an industry is several years in the future is absolutely correct. However, the postwar years and especially the 1950s saw a dramatic increase in the complexity of auto electrical systems, with power steering, power brakes, power windows, power seats, power door locks, signal-seeking radios, automatic headlight dimmers, air conditioning, turn signals, back-up lights, and quad headlights all beginning to appear, especially on the luxury cars that might be more numerous in a large city.
  5. It says "Cash Registers" and "Adding Machines."
  6. Hmmm. Maybe I will reach out to Gabert fils. There is a very interesting church and a well-kept "survivor" travel-courts motel both by the Gabert firm in Freeport. He might be interested to see those. Thanks for the info and pictures, Ozzie! Do we know that Gabert lived here for sure, or just that his firm designed the house? Also, I don't know if it was mentioned here, that while MacKie and Kamrath is/are generally credited for Temple Emanu El on Sunset, Lenard Gabert had a major role in the project, too. Here are links to Jack Wisdom's biographical sketches in the AIA Historical Directory of American Architects: http://public.aia.org/sites/hdoaa/wiki/Wiki%20Pages/ahd1049155.aspx I was amused to see that in the 1956 edition of the Directory, Wisdom was credited as being an associate on a project for "J. K. Rawlcower." Harry Potter fans no doubt find that typo amusing, but they mean Joseph Krakower, a Jewish architect like Gabert, who worked on a number of projects for the Jewish community. Wisdom actually worked for Gabert for only a few years early in his career and went on to have a partnership with (Percy?) Zimmermann and later his own firm.
  7. Conventional houses today tend to have glass used differently and they also tend to have bigger bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchens. Some people find fifties houses, both mod and ranch, somewhat lacking for that reason. And interior brick, either painted or unpainted, is a real love it or hate it material. Most real mods of the period are very invested in "bringing the outdoors inside." You don't see that as much in a lot of new houses.
  8. There still is a little bit of a little farm surrounded by shopping centers at NASA Rd. 1 and the Gulf Freeway. It's been encroached upon over the years.
  9. Hmmm. In Google Earth '44 and '53 I see several things on the south side of Alabama and on the west side of Buffalo Speedway that could be plausibly a small farmhouse surrounded by trees. Also a little compound on the northeast corner of Buffalo and Alabama on the '53 map. Hard to get any real detail at those resolutions.
  10. I thought they were OK. Their heyday was between the Hamburgers by Gourmet and Zeke's period and the Goode Company and Beck's Prime period, where they were kind of the only non-chain burger game in the area. (except for the place on Kelvin, which I never went to and wish I had.) My biggest gripe about them was that, like Five Guys today, they didn't do shakes, only soft drinks.
  11. If you hear back from him and learn anything you can share, please do. I might want to ask him about a couple of Gabert projects in Freeport.
  12. It could be that what you are calling Miller's (which, like brucesw I remember on Main) was actually Charlie's Hamburger Joint (over 2 dozen sold!) Collina's was there later.
  13. I'm seeing a lot of African-Americans in this photo. The car is a 1955 Oldsmobile, so at the risk of stating the obvious, this might be during the segregated era of Houston's history. Maybe look on Lyons, Jensen, or Dowling? Edit: Oh, wait, you said '56. Still, segregated.
  14. You are absolutely right about El Meson, of course, and for many years it was the only place to get Cuban specialties like plantains and black beans. As the Village has moved upscale (and the Cold War has faded) they have played up their Cuban offerings and heritage. In the early 80's when I first started going there it was really just known as the closest "Mexican" restaurant to Rice.
  15. Yes, Wilshire Village was quite desirable even up into the early 80s. I know people who lived there and loved it although some of the buildings were starting to show their lack of maintenance. Hardwood floors, carefully considered ventilation from metal windows, and stainless steel kitchen cabinets as I recall.
  16. Hmmm. Did not know that. Interesting…
  17. That would explain why I thought it might be "Neptune" Motor Courts.
  18. Not to put too fine a point on it, but BOOM! Great job, gnu!
  19. I think you mean El Meson. It's still there, and still good.
  20. There was one on Dixie Drive at 332 in Clute, next to (you guessed it) K-Mart. It was gone by the mid-80s, though.
  21. Yes, and the trucks look like pipe service trucks, too.
  22. Yeah, I found a couple Olds'es with the visor. I really think it has nothing to do with the brand, they were found on many cars. You really should download Google Earth for this task. There is much more there than there is on Historic Aerials. http://www.google.com/earth/download/ge/agree.html
  23. Just to reiterate: there is a lot of 1944 and 1953 aerial imagery on the Google Earth desktop application. In looking at the Boone Loop area posited by Subdude, I see a tantalizing long building in a group of smaller buildings in the 1953 image. I actually _don't_ think that's it, but it is close. Perhaps further perusal of the Google Earth stuff may help. I will do some later, but I just wanted to mention it in case someone else really wants to look around. ;-) I'm reasonably willing (80% certainty) that the white car is a '51 or '52 Oldsmobile. Backlight, hood ornament, and circle on trunk look plausible, and I've seen several with the windshield shade, although those were found on many cars. Might also be another GM or Mopar, it's almost certainly not a Ford product.
  24. I'm reasonably willing to identify the lighter car as a '48-ish Studebaker Starlight Coupe. Fenders and backlight look about right. http://oldcarandtruckpictures.com/Studebaker/
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